Let’s begin with some definitions:

Premenopause: The time before a person with female anatomy begins to show hormonal fluctuations, when they have a regular menstrual cycle. Begins after menstruation is established in adolescence around age 20 and continues until perimenopause begins.

Perimenopause: the transition from the reproductive years (regular menstruation, and hormone fluctuations) to menopause. It can begin as early as age 35. It is a 10-15 year period leading up to menopause when a person with female anatomy begins to receive cues that hormones are changing.

Menopause: the date exactly one year following their last menstrual period. It’s one day. (Eat cake!)

Surgical Menopause: the day a person with female anatomy’s ovaries are surgically removed.

Postmenopauseal/Menopausal: The time after a person with female anatomy is officially finished having periods, starts the day after the day she celebrates menopause. The term postmenopause and menopause are often used synonymously.

Symptoms of Perimenopause and Menopause

Symptoms of Perimenopause and Menopause can vary from person to person. Some women have no issues to report. Others feel they can hardly go on.

Common Symptoms:

  • Hot flashes
  • Night sweats
  • Irritability
  • Weight gain
  • Insomnia
  • Brain fog
  • Decreased feeling of wellbeing
  • Decreased libido
  • Vaginal dryness
  • Vaginal, cervical and uterine atrophy
  • Decreased tissue elasticity everywhere, impacting vagina, bladder control and rectal control
  • Pain with intercourse due to vaginal dryness or atrophy
  • 25% decrease in metabolism
  • Decrease in lean body tissue – like muscle.

Reasons to seek physiotherapy:

This North Vancouver physiotherapist can help with problems like pain with intercourse, bladder leakage, fecal leakage, constipation, and pelvic organ prolapse. Physiotherapists like Gillian McCormick can also help foster good movement strategies to help reconnect with movement – the best way to combat decreasing metabolism, increased body weight, loss of lean body tissue, difficulty sleeping, mood disruptions and feeling sexy.